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Terps endure a painful, 83-77 loss

For Maryland, losing to William & Mary tonight must have been like falling off a cliff in slow motion. You know what's happening, but you can't stop it.

Maryland knew all about William & Mary's Princeton-style offense and three-point shooting. It knew William & Mary would sag on defense (it did) and dare the Terps to shoot from the outside.

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Still, the Terps -- at least in the first half -- seemed to take the bait and tried to match the Tribe's three-point shooting instead of penetrating inside. Big mistake.

"It turned into a shooting contest and they won," Gary Williams said. The coach said his team lacked patience.

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William & Mary entered shooting 41 percent from behind the arc. It's what they do. The Terps aren't built that way. They're better at penetrating and dishing and curling to the hoop.

Maryland seemed to try to reverse course in the second half by pounding the ball inside and driving repeatedly into the lane. But Williams said the game was essentially lost in the final 10 minutes of the first half, when the Tribe built a lead.

On defense, the Terps had worked repeatedly in practice this week on getting out to the three-point line. Sometimes, William & Mary shot threes in transition before Maryland's defense was set. Other times, Tribe players hit inside cutters who got fouled.

Said Eric Hayes: "They were back-cutting and driving. It's a difficult offense to play defense against. We watched a lot of tape. It's tough to simulate the offense they run

So what does Gary Williams tell his players now? "You tell your team this is the 12th game of the year. Everything is ahead of us."

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